We’ve hit with every performance bat from 2015 through 2020. These are the Best Drop 5 Baseball Bats readily available that we’ve tested and measured.
By Brian October 4, 2019 2:45 pm
Update October 19: After hitting with the vast majority of 2020 Drop 5 bats over several days with several different hitters we updated this list. As the holidays get closer we expect more drop 5 bats to get added to the pile, but there are enough to start giving some suggestions at least. We added the 2020 main stream bats from Easton, DeMarini, Slugger and Rawlings to the mix. Also, 13 Year Old players in USSSA tournaments are required to swing nothing lighter than a drop 8 bat in 2020. That should make the amount of drop 8 and 5 bats increase. Here is the rule change verbatim: “Effective January 1st 2020, all 13U events and all teams in 13u events must use a maximum drop 8 (-8) bat with the official USSSA1.15 BPF Mark permanently stamped. All 14u events and all teams in the 14u event must use a maximum drop 5 (-5) bat with the officialUSSSA 1.15 BPF Mark Permanently stamped. “
Most drop 5 bats only come in nothing shorter than a 30-inch. This makes sense as those who look for a drop 5 are usually bigger and looking to wield a heavier bat.
In terms of choosing the right sized drop 5 bat the most useful data set we have is that on our Bat Size Chart.
We found there are virtually no reports of folks using drop 5 bats before age 11. At age 11 the most common is a 31/26 and only 5% of hitter use that. At 12 hitters use a 31/26 more times than they use a 32/27 and roughly 15% of 12 year olds use a drop 5. 13 year old non BBCOR players third most popular bat is a 32/27.
|Best Drop 5 USSSA Bat||Best Drop 5 USA Bat||Best Drop 5 USSSA Bat 2019||Hottest Drop 5 Bat 2018||Best Drop 5 Bat Of All Time||Best Drop 5 Bat Under $100||Lightest Drop 5 Bat|
|Brand||1. DeMarini||2. Louisville Slugger||3. Marucci||4. Easton||5. DeMarini||6. Louisville Slugger||7. Rawlings|
|Model||CF||Select||CAT 8||Ghost X||CF Zen||519 Omaha||VELO ACP|
|Type||Two Piece Composite||Hybrid||Single Piece Aluminum||Two Piece Composite||Two Piece Composite||Single Piece Aluminum||Single Piece Aluminum|
At the time of this writing we have hit with the vast majority of 2020 drop 5 bats. We don’t think much will change between now and when the season starts. But, if we do happen to run across a new drop 5 bat we will update the results here if it can beat anything out. Otherwise, consider the above the data the most up to date information we have on drop 5 bats.
We have hit with every drop 5 baseball bat on the market since 2014 through 2020. In the USSSA bat space, we recommend the 2017 DeMarini CF Zen, although it is three years old at this point, as the best drop 5 baseball bat. AS the bat becomes more and more rare its price goes higher and higher. Our recommendation is based on exit speeds and player feedback which categorically praises the 2017 CF Zen Drop 5.
Our favorite USABat in Louisville Sluggers Select for 2020. However, note, that bat swings very, very heavy. It is as heavy swinging as the 33-inch 2020 Slugger Prime.
Sizes: 30, 31, 32, 33-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Two Piece Composite | Barrel Type: Composite | Price: $$$$ | Swing Weight: Balanced | Rating: 4.8/5 | Models: WTDXUFX20, WTDXCBC20, WTDXCB520, WTDXC8Z20, WTDXCBZ20 | Features: Huge Barrel, Long Sweet Spot
Although competitors are closing the gap, and surely some will complain about this choice, DeMarini’s 2020 CF is still the best drop 5 bat. As the inventory for the 2017 goes away we expect this bat to take the top spot. The 2020 CF drop 5 hits bombs, feels great and reamins the most popular choice among drop 5 players for 2020. If people vote by their wallets then its a clear winner in the popular vote cateogry.
The bat swings balanced, nothing like the end weighted drop 5 Slugger Select. The bat has a top end feel. That, combined with the connection piece and weight make it actually difficult to ring your hands. It’s a smooth sailing stick that will make any drop 5 hitter happy. As well, it dominates the plate appearances at every serious top end tournament in the country.MORE: 2020 DeMarini CF Review
Before we slobber all over ourselves, its worth noting that the 2020 Louisville Slugger Select in a drop 5 swings heavy. Our swing weight measurements showed it to swing as heavy as many BBCOR bats in with the same length. As a reference point, the Drop 5 Select in USA swings as heavy as the BBCOR Slugger Prime.
That out of the way, the Select in a drop 5 is a monster bat. If you can wield it then we say why not? It’s two piece hybrid feel is hot out of the wrapper and feels great on hits and mishits. In terms of pure pop on the barrel its great.
The only other serious competitor, and it is serious, in the USA space drop 5 arena is Axe’s Elite.MORE: 2020 Louisville Slugger Select Review
Sizes: 30, 31, 32-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Single Piece Aluminum | Barrel Type: Aluminum | Price: $$$$ | Swing Weight: Balanced | Rating: 4.9/5 | Models: MSBC88, MSBC85, MCBC8, MCBCC8, MSBC8 | Features: Variable Wall Thickness, Anti-Vibration Knob, Top End User Reviews
In truth, we’d take the 2018 DeMarini CF Zen over the CAT 8. But, considering the price differences and the fact the CAT 8 should deserves some love on this we put it as our representative of the Best Drop 5 bat for 2019. The bat is stiff and can hit it a country mile. In theory, and likely in practice, a stiff single piece bat can hit the ball further than the jello connection pieces of the two piece composites on this list. A stiffer bat means more power is transferred to the ball and, hence, better pop. This is what makes the CAT 8 a fantastic choice, espeically for the heavy hitting drop 5 player who wants a good sized barrel, loud ping, and real ability to flatten a ball.MORE: 2019 Marucci CAT 8 Review
Sizes: 30, 31, 32-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Two Piece Composite | Barrel Type: Composite | Price: $$$$ | Swing Weight: Balanced | Rating: 4.5/5/5 | Models: | Features: Balanced
If any bat over the last few years, that you can often find in stock, gives the CF a run for its money in the drop 5 space it is the much less popular Easton Ghost X in a 2 3/4 drop 5. Great ratings and much less expensive.
We’ve hit with the CF in a drop 5 and the Ghost X 2018 in a drop 5 a lot. While every hitter we spoke to and observed preferred the CF, the Ghost X is not far behind. It gets fantastic user reviews and if you shy away from DeMarini’s CF because of durability issues than the Ghost X is the best choice. Considering the price compared to the 2017 CF it could easily be argued the Ghost X is the best drop 5 bat.
Expect a smaller barrel profile in the 2 3/4 then you’ll find in bats like the drop 10 or 8 of the same year and model. Although the profile is smaller it can kill balls. We’ve seen tiny kids have the biggest hits of their lives with this drop 5.
It’s a two piece composite bat so comes with a high end connection piece for a smooth smash. If you can find this bat for less than $150 new and are in the drop 5 USSSA space it is a must.MORE: 2018 Easton Ghost X Review
Sizes: 30, 31, 32-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Two Piece Composite | Barrel Type: Composite | Price: $$$$$ | Swing Weight: Balanced | Rating: 4.99/5 | Models: DXCBZR | Features: Explosive Power, Illegal for USSSA, Big Barrel
We actually think the 2017 CF Zen drop 5 should have been banned like its 2017 drop 10 and drop 8 cousin bats. But, for whatever reason, the drop 5 made it past the secondary USSSA checks. And, to put it mildly, the bat can absolutely RAKE. If you are in the market for the best drop 5 bat, and are willing to spend what it takes to acquire this bat, then look no further than the 2017 DeMarini CF Zen.
The bat has a big drop but still a pretty balanced feel. At contact the bat feels fantastic and delivers a punch unseen at the plate. Based on our exit speeds it is the fastest hitting bat, accounting for swing speed, on the market today. It outperforms BBCOR bats by a considerable margin.
Sellers pricing moves often so its hard to decide when the CF Zen in a drop 5 is still worth it. We’d be game for something under $500 but much more than that and we feel like the 2018 CF isn’t that much worse. The 2019 and 2020 versions are right in line with the 2018 CF Zen and are also highly recommendable. If you can’t find this bat in stock or for a reasonable price then check out our #4 below. (Its the 2020 CF Zen).MORE: 2017 DeMarini CF Zen Review
Sizes: 30, 31, 32-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Single Piece Aluminum | Barrel Type: Aluminum | Price: $$$ | Swing Weight: Depends | Rating: 4.85/5 | Models: WTLSLO519X10, WTLSLO519B5, WTLBBO519B3 | Features: Traditional Single Piece
The only way to find a new drop 5 bat in either USA or USSSA is when vendors lower the original price. Even at $150 the pickings are slim. But, the smart shopper can usually find a good deal if they are patient and have the time. At the time of this writing, we could find Slugger’s 519 Omaha in a drop 5 USSSA for $99. That is a fantastic deal on a highly recommendable bat for that kind of price.
Is it as fancy as the CF or as cool sounding as the Marucci CAT 8? No. But, if you know how to swing well you can absolutely do some serious damage. For what its worth, the Omaha series of bats are what many elite college player use because they love the stiff feel, big barrel and swing weight of the Omaha. Each of those characteristics hold true for the 2019 519 Omaha Drop 5.
If you are good without going brand new then you might also have a ton of success in the secondary market. Check places like eBay and SidelineSwap for a decent deal on an older, used, drop 5 bat.
If you’re looking for a cheaper USA option under $100 go be a hero and get wood. There are plenty of options in the drop 5 wood space and think you should start with a bat like Thor’s Hammer from SSK.MORE: 2019 Louisville Slugger 519 Omaha Review
Sizes: 30, 31, 32-inch | Drop: 5 | Bat Type: Single Piece Aluminum | Barrel Type: Aluminum | Price: $$$ | Swing Weight: Light | Rating: 4.6/5 | Models: BBZV3 | Features: Extended Composite End Cap, Very Light Swing in Drop 5
Far and away Rawlings 2020 VELO ACP has the lightest swing of all the drop 5 bats on the market. That is, although the bats have similar scale weights, the distribution of the weight along the bat makes the VELO ACP feel the lightest. More of its weight is centered towards the hands. In fact, several drop 8 bats weigh more than the Velo. Compared to the very heavy swinging 2020 Select the bat swings 25% heavier. The next closest bat, as far as we measured, in terms of swing weight is the Voodoo Balanced which is 17% heavier.
If you are in a league that requires a drop 5 bat but still need all the help you can get in terms of swing weight than the 2020 Velo in a drop 5 is the lightest swinging drop 5 there is. It will feel like a drop 8 which is exactly what some kids need.MORE: 2020 Rawlings VELO ACP Review
There are many end loaded drop 5 bats that swing with a greater MOI (swing weight) than many BBCOR bats. Meaning, an endloaded drop 5 bat with a BPF 1.15 stamp can be a bigger hitter than any number BBCOR bat. As such, those who hit with an endloaded drop 5 are bomb making hitters that pack serious punch.
The balanced drop 5 is a conundrum. Indeed, one chooses a drop 5 to get more power because your swing speed has maxed out and the greater weight gives you more power. But, one would use a balanced bat to help increase bat speed and make better contact with the ball. So, a balanced drop 5 creates some logical inconsistencies.
We conclude that those looking for a drop 5 in a balanced model can either
An aluminum barreled drop 5 would fit a player who wants hot out of the wrapper performance and more feel through contact. As such, there are a decent number of drop 5 baseball bats that have an aluminum barrel. Most of these bats are end loaded. Some, however, are single piece aluminum bats. Others are hybrids that have a composite handle and an aluminum barrel.